Write a new post in response to today’s one-word prompt.
Whenever I see the word witness, I automatically think of the 8th commandment. “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor” The 10 Commandments have carried a lot of weight for all of mankind ever since Moses carried the stone tablets down from the mountain. The court systems worldwide swear in witnesses with one hand on a Bible. A court of law, the foundation for telling of the truth, is that courtroom.
When witnesses swear under oath that someone committed a crime and that witness is lying, the consequences for the person being tried are very serious and very unfair, as he is sentenced for a crime he did not commit. Someone could bear false witness against another, even under oath for many hateful reasons. That is why it is such an egregious crime.
Our complicated legal system creates a lot of hourly pay for attorneys, who do the groundwork of rounding up information to aid in their clients defense. He wants the best witnesses he can possibly get. He also wants to have a chance to question and pick the jurors that might lean his way on the case. In many cases the person with the most money or privileged position can also have the most influence on the jurors that are picked. This could quite possibly bring about an unfair trial but the system allows for that with an endless appeal process.
Government or business whistle blowers who decide to spill the beans about fraud or gang land criminal activity have access to a witness protection program that is run by the Justice Department. This program, in a lot of cases is the only reason they can get a witness to testify. The witness protection program is quite costly and is no guarantee of safety for a witness. Those in charge of the program can be bought off, and divulge the location of someone. Some will seek revenge against a former witness endlessly.
“As of 2013, 8,500 witnesses and 9,900 family members have been protected by the U.S. Marshals Service since 1971.\l ”
“Around 17 percent of protected witnesses who have committed a crime will be caught committing another crime, compared to the almost 41 percent of parolees who return to